It’s become so terribly trendy (alliteration intended) to make a youtube-plus-blog review of this or that summer or winter read …that I couldn’t resist. Sorry if you expected #travelling or #holidays post. As I already said in a previous enry – literature is travelling.
So here I am, end of July, reading The Pagoda (1998).That’s Patricia Powell’s the third novel. Apart from being a sweet-looking lady, she a terrific writer!
When I first took the book in my hands (strange because I rarely buy the physical thing anymore), I noticed that there were not enough dialogues for a summer read. I started it and suddenly, out of the blue, I was devouring the pages, nearing the half of it. SUP? It’s not even humorous!
There is something else…
Well, of course, it’s about travelling, it’s about immigration. Yeah, THIS kind of travelling. But not only…being a Jamaican Powell writes about a Chinese immigrant’s experience on the island. Chinese immigrant, referred as “he”. Am I hearing some snorting? SHE (b. Jamaica), writes from the “pee oh vee” of a HE (b. China)? And she proves she can do it and does it beautifully. It’s an astonishing novel about multiple border-crossings. A real globetrotter.
But the subject-matter is not unique. There are also Trumpet (Jackie Kay), Middlesex (Eugenides) and I’m sure many more. Race + Sex/uality. The eternal topic. What is unique is the fluidity of language and the fluctuation between suspense and mystery. Also, the message that I got (so far): make your dreams come true, or, if you can’t, just try hard to.
Okay, it’s taking me a while to finish it…but so what? A book has to be savored, just like Cambridge (UK). :)
P.S.: There are NO SPOILERS in my post.
P.S.2: Cannot believe I just wrote that thing, about the “message”! Any talk about “messages” in fiction should be banned!